By the time the third raven landed, I knew I was in trouble.
I’ve always loved ravens. They’re beautiful in all their shining black, they’re enchanting in the songs of their caws. Some claim they’re bringers of evil, messengers of the wicked, but I don’t believe that. Ravens are lovely, friendly, they’re kind. They always try to help us.
I’ve always watched ravens. As far as I can remember, they’ve been around me, guarding me. They’ve kept me safe, guided me, have always made sure I take the right way home during nights. They may not speak the same language as humans, but they communicate with me still, telling me the secrets of the world.
I’ve always been drawn to ravens. They’re easier to be with, to love, than humans, they understand more. Some claim I’m crazy or evil because I’m surrounded by ravens, some say that I can’t belong with those wearing black, but that’s not true. They’re my friends, and I trust them. We always try to help each other.
I’ve always known ravens. That’s why I know I’m in trouble. Three ravens have already swooped down outside the window at the little table I was occupying. I’m in my favourite café, taking the evening to enjoy the silent chatter of humans, the sweet taste of a cookie. As I continue to slowly sip my tea – symphony tea, it’s called, a leaf mixture of mango, papaya, pineapple and apples – I watch the street outside the window, hoping to see what they could be warning me about.
Nothing. I see nothing. The ravens have kept coming though, and I have decided that I can’t stay. It isn’t safe. I pull on my pale yellow cloak – it’s colour deeply reminds me of ochre-lored flatbills – and start my journey home.
All the way home. They follow me all the way home, insistent on showing me the way. They stay outside my garden gate, though, causing me to think that what they’ve tried to tell me about will be found inside my house. But, I realise, they haven’t actually been warning me about something at all. They have just been telling me I had to get here. They have been helping me.
I take a deep breath, inhaling the fresh air which is filled with the scent of summer and fresh fruits growing in the garden. I tell my thanks to my friends, and walk up to the door, letting myself be filled by the singing notes of a beautiful hymn. I unlock the door, without really realising, for I feel like I’m in a trance. I’m covered in a shining, black blanket and something, or someone is controlling me.
Yet, I’m not afraid. I relax into the power that makes my feet pass the threshold without me deciding to do so. I relish in the freedom I feel from not being in charge. I enjoy the warmth of the black feathers cover that’s surrounding me. I trust this, knowing that the one who is doing it cares for me, loves me.
I’m carried to my room, placed to sit on my bed. I feel a light kiss being pressed upon my forehead and at once the enchantment is broken. I realise I’m looking into a pair of deep black eyes that hold more truths than the world can ever know.
“Welcome home, my dearest Flatbill Love,” the Raven Queen caws and I smile. Only she would be able to know when I get too lost in my thoughts of humans at that café and need to be brought home. I truly love her so much.
“Thanks,” I answer, the word uttered in a short, high but melodic note, before I lean forward to kiss my wife on her lips. The two words have the same meaning as the three ones I was thinking before, and she knows that. She knows all the secrets of the world.